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Register NOW!This image means it’s time for ourPaul Mathews Prairie Celebration, SATURDAY, 5:00pm-9:00pm.Join us in downtown Greenville, for a delightful evening at…

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2018 PRAIRIES & POLLINATORS A REGIONAL CELEBRATIONMonarchs are a key prairie species and rely on pollinator plants. Photo by Chuck DuplantGreater…

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3rd Saturday Prairie Restoration Workday begins at 8am at Kirchoff Family Farm, Sponsored by the San Antonio NPAT Chapter.

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Prairie Facts

Past News & Events

Katy Prairie Conservancy Presents January Wild West Tour



Join in the fun for Owl Prowl and Coyote Howl on January 24!

HOUSTON (January 10, 2014) –  You can stargaze and get a glimpse of nocturnal creatures in a peaceful nighttime setting on the Katy Prairie at Katy Prairie Conservancy’s (KPC) first Wild West Tour of the year on Jan. 24.

Join Master Naturalist and birding expert Glenn Olsen for a twilight tour of the prairie from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. at “Owl Prowl and Coyote Howl.” He will lead the group out onto KPC preserves to search for great horned owls, screech owls, barn owls, short-eared owls and maybe even some coyotes. The event includes a light dinner and requires advance registration.

“Our Wild West Tours are extremely popular with adults of all ages,” says Mary Anne Piacentini. “They combine entertainment and education to make for memorable experiences.  Glenn Olsen is a treasure and always provides fascinating commentary and insights about wildlife on the prairie.”

Cost for the Wild West Tour is $50 per person, and a portion of that fee goes toward funding KPC educational programs. Tours start at Indiangrass Preserve, 31950 Hebert Road, in Waller, where participants will meet at KPC’s field office. To register for the Wild West Tour, go to katyprairie.org and click on the “Visit” tab to find “events.”

The Katy Prairie Conservancy is a nonprofit land trust dedicated to preserving an ecologically vital tallgrass prairie and associated wetlands area on Houston’s far west side for the enjoyment and benefit of all. 

Contact: Christine Mansfield, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), 713-523-6135 or Carol Brejot, 713-503-3885, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Houston Chapter - Native Prairies Association of Texas (HNPAT)

Coming on February 27:

Mardi Grass: Flora of the Famous Cajun Prairie in Deer Park Texas by Jason Singhurst (TPWD)

Grab your Krewe and some beads in on February 27 and join us to celebrate Mardi Grass: Flora of the Famous Cajun Prairie in Deer Park Texas presented by Botanist and Author Jason Singhurst of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department.  6:30 p.m. party time; 7:00 p.m. Mardi Grass starts. 3015 Richmond Ave. 77057.


Houston Chapter, Native Prairies Association of Texas

ANYONE may subscribe to the HNPAT email list by sending requests to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) with subject “Subscribe to HNPAT.“Your email will only be passed on to NPAT, the new owners to be of Deer Park Prairie and our parent organization, and no other, and you may unsubscribe from either email list at any time.

News and Events from Katy Prairie Conservancy

Sheena Abernathy from Katy Prairie Conservancy wrote:

KPC Unplugged Adventure: Winter Wings

On Saturday, January 11, 2014 from 10:00 am - 12:30 pm the Winter Wings adventure will offer visitors of all ages a chance to observe the bird life of Warren Lake. Activities include hiking around the lake, viewing birds with spotting scopes, and bird-centered activities. Volunteers are needed to assist with the 45-minute bird hike around the lake.

Where: Matt Cook Memorial Wildlife Viewing Platform @ Warren Lake

Registration: Click here to register

Sierra Club: Katy Prairie Service Outing: Planting Native Grasses & Wildflowers

Saturday, January 11 at 9:00 AM, the Sierra Club will be visiting the Katy Prairie to help with planting grasses and wildflowers at the Indian Grass Preserve. Followed by a hiking opportunity.
Click here for details

WEEKLY ACTIVITIES

Sheldon Lake Prairie Restoration (every Tuesday from 8am – 11:30)

Click here for details.

Prairie Restoration at San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site (every Thursday from 8:30-11:30)


Activities include: Rescue and division, seedling bump-up, invasive treatment and planting. The nursery is located on the battleship side of the park in the Office area.

Prairie Fridays @ Armand Bayou Nature Center (Every Friday at 8:30 am)

Fri, January 10, 8:30am – 11:30am at Armand Bayou Nature Center, 8500 Bay Area Boulevard, Pasadena, TX 77507

MONTHLY ACTIVITIES

Marysee Prairie Work Days (First Saturday of the month)

On Saturday, January 4 from 8 am to 4 pm voluteers are invited to come out and help at the Marysee Prairie in the Big Thicket region. These workdays will be held the first Saturday of every month at 2077 County Road 2077 Hull, TX 77564. Contact Frank Blake or Tom Maddux for more details.

“The Marysee Prairie is one of the last remnants of tallgrass prairie in the Big Thicket region. Come assist the Big Thicket Association in this ongoing effort to revive and maintain the native grasses and wildflowers on this site near Batson, Texas. Work tasks vary by month, but usually involve controlling the regrowth of woody species and keeping the prairie clear for mowing. Tools and gloves provided. For more info and to confirm work dates, contact Tom Maddux at 936-697-3425, or Frank Blake at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or 713-528-2896. Works days are the first Saturday of every month.” ~ CEC Website

1st Sat. Refuge Tours - Attwater Prairie Chicken Wildlife Refuge (First Saturday of the month)

Saturday, January 4 will be the next guided refuge tour. The trip is two-hours and includes information about native coastal prairie, the history of the refuge, the biology of the Attwater’s Prairie Chicken, and what is being done to save it from extinction.

Space is limited and reservations are required. Contact the refuge staff to reserve your spot on this interesting tour.

Click here for details.

DIRECTIONS: The refuge headquarters and visitor center is located 6.5 miles northeast of Eagle Lake, TX off of FM 3013, or south from Sealy on Highway 36 to FM 3013 and traveling west for 10 miles. The headquarters is located 2 miles west of the main entrance on FM 3013. lat/long: 29.668827, -96.266751

Katy Prairie Field Day (Second Thursday of the month)
Field Days – Dig the Katy Prairie by helping in our Native Seed Nursery!

Want to get your hands dirty? The second Thursday of each month, from 8 am to 3 pm, KPC hosts Field Days, generally at our Indiangrass Preserve. Volunteers will work in KPC’s Coastal Prairie Native Seed Nursery watering, weeding, and potting seedlings. Occasionally, we work at other locations. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more details.

Project Blazing Star Workday (Every Second Saturday of the month)

Meet at Pavilion next to 6520 Almeda, Hermann Park’s Bayou Parkland on Sat, January 11, 8:30am – 11:30am. Contact Lan Shen (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address))
MONTHLY MEETINGS

Native Plant Society Monthly Meeting (Third Thursday of the month)

On January 16, 2014 from 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm at Houston Arboretum and Nature Center (4501 Woodway Dr Houston, TX 77024)

Houston Chapter-Native Prairies Association of Texas (Fourth Wednesday of the month)

On January 22, 2014 from 6:30 pm – 8:45 pm at Bayland Community Center (6400 Bissonnet St
Houston, TX 77074)


Commons Ford Prairie Restoration Organization Events

Ed Fair wrote:

“I hope that you are enjoying the holidays and the Christmas Bird Counts if you are participating in them.  A couple of pieces of information as noted below:

Prairie Bird Surveys 
We are now ready to schedule the prairie bird surveys for this winter.  We need volunteers who are adept at spotting sparrows and other prairie species, but we can also use volunteers to help us keep the tally and walk the transects.  The surveys take only about 60 - 90 minutes to complete. If you are interested, please let us know which of the following specific dates you would be available.  The surveys will be conducted on three different dates.  We will conduct the surveys on a Saturday or Sunday of the particular weekend depending upon which day we can muster the necessary minimum number of volunteers.  If you have already contacted me, please let me know which dates you are available.  We are hoping to schedule on the following weekends:
January 18/19
February 1/2
February 15/16

Central Texas Gardner 
CTG has completed its production of the feature on the Commons Ford Prairie Restoration Project.  We will provide a link to the schedule soon, but the first airing is on KLRU on Saturday, February 8 at 12:00 PM and 4:00 PM.  The program will also air on several other PBS affiliated stations around the state (and in a few other states as well).

UPDATE:

1.  Prairie Bird Surveys.  Our first survey of the winter is now scheduled for Sunday, January 19.  We could use a couple more people versed in prairie bird (e.g., sparrow) identification and maybe one or two more individuals to assist with keeping the data as we conduct the survey.  The survey will begin at 8:00 AM and will be completed in less than 90 minutes.  The park will be open for casual birding, etc. after we finish.  Please let me know if you have any interest.

2.  Tree Planting.  TreeFolks will be conducting a volunteer tree sapling planting along the riparian edge at Commons Ford on Saturday, January 11 from 9:00 AM to noon.  They need lots of volunteers.  No special skill or background needed, just a willingness to help with an important project.  Visit this link for details.
Thanks for your continued support.

Ed Fair
Commons Ford Prairie Restoration Organization
3532 Bee Caves Rd., Suite 115
Austin, TX 78746
512-329-9802
www.commonsfordpro.blogspot.com
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
www.flickr.com/photos/commonsfordpro

NPAT’s First Annual Photography Contest

Enter Your Favorite Prairie Photo In our first Annual Photography Contest

Awards and prizes presented at our End of Year Celebration this year at Washington on the Brazos State Park on Dec. 7th, 5 to 8 pm.

Send your favorite photo(s) digitally to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) with the subject line “Photography Contest” or print copies to:

Native Prairies Association of Texas
415 N Guadalupe Street
PMB 385
San Marcos, TX 78666          

Photo must be received by December 3rd.  Include the following information with your picture: Name, address, phone number and category selected to enter photo in. Photos can be any size, any format, with any aspect ratio and submitted digitally or print. We allow multiple entries to the contest per person, but only one prize per person.

Categories:
Adult – Scenic Prairie, Prairie Weather, Prairie Plants, Prairie Animals
Children (to 12)  –  Scenic Prairie, Prairie Weather, Prairie Plants, Prairie Animals

*Contact NPAT at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) with the subject line “Donate Photography” if you are interested in donating a photograph to be sold at a private auction in the future, proceeds to benefit NPAT.

 

Natives to Fly For

Attracting Butterflies, Hummingbirds,and Song Birds to Your Yard

When: February 22, 2014, 9:00 – 3:00
Where: Schertz Civic Center, 1400 Schertz Pkwy

Workshop Leaders
Butterflies—Craig Hensley, Texas Parks &Wildlife Department
Hummingbirds—Mark Klym, Texas Parks &Wildlife Department co-author of Hummingbirds of Texas
Song Birds—Ann Mallard, Audubon Society
Wildscaping Your Yard—Kelly Conrad Simon, TPWD author of Texas Wildscapes: Gardening for Wildlife

Vendors
Maldonado Nursery, Seguin
Schulz Nursery, Marion
Wild Birds Unlimited
The Twig Bookstore

Tickets $40—includes all-day workshop and box lunch.
To purchase, call 830-303-0333
Limited number available, so buy early!

More Seed Collecting Field Trips!

We are happy to announce two additional seed collecting field trips and OPPORTUNITIES to visit prairies in areas, not easily accessible by the public!

WHEN:  This Friday, Nov. 15 at 10:00 am - 12:30 pm. (Carpooling available from Houston)
WHERE: Sandyland Sanctuary (a Texas Nature Conservancy property) near Silsbee in E. Texas; with Diana Foss and Lan Shen;
 
WHEN: Saturday, Nov. 23 at 8:00 am - noon; staying for grilled hamburger/ hot dog is optional.
WHERE: Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR near Sealy with John Magera of US Fish & Wildlife

Please join us and enjoy mornings on the prairie, while collecting seeds of native prairie plants for the Coastal Prairie Seed Increase Program and for use in restoration projects and in city pocket prairies. No experience necessary.  Seed collecting is a way to learn to recognize well one or two prairie plants - the ones whose seeds you are collecting!  You are very welcome to take some seeds home to grow or share with friends! 

If you have not already registered for one of the events listed below, please click this link to register.  If you have already registered via constant contact and would like to ADD (or cancel) events, please reply to this email and I will change your registration for you.
After you register, you will receive a confirmation email from Constant Contact.  Should you not receive that, you may not be registered.  You will also receive driving directions and other information from me plus a reminder the day before the trip.

As always, please wear closed toe-shoes, long pants, and preferably long sleeves.  Remember hat, sunscreen, and insect repellent.  If you have them, please bring pruners (preferably) or scissors and gardening gloves. Rattlesnake master and other seeds can be prickly.

Fall Seed Collecting Dates & Locations:

  Friday, November 1 - UH Coastal Center in La Marque
  Friday, November 15 - Sandyland Sanctuary near Silsbee in E. Texas, 10:00 am - 12:30 pm with Diana Foss (TPWD) & Lan Shen
  Saturday, November 16 - UH Coastal Center, 9:00 am - 11:30 pm; with Jaime Gonzalez. 
  Saturday, November 23 - Attwater Prairie Chicken NWR near Sealy, 8:00 am - noon with John Magera, US Fish & Wildlife; hamburger & hot dogs will be grilled for lunch. Map.
  Saturday, November 30 - Katy Prairie, 9:00 am - 11:30 pm; with Lan
  Saturday, December 7 - Nash Prairie, 9:00 am - 11:30 pm; with Lan.

On Friday, Nov. 15, collect with Diana Foss (TPWD) and Lan Shen at the Roy E. Larsen Sandyland Sanctuary, a Texas Nature Conservancy property near Silsbee in E. Texas. Sandyland is “...[a] rare combination of swamp, open-floor forest and southern pinelands [that] create a preserve with remarkable diversity, sustaining 582 plant species and 234 animal species. ” Among those plant species are prairie grasses, whose seeds we will be collecting. (Carpooling available from Houston - reply to this email.)

On November 1 and Saturday, Nov. 16, collect with Jaime Gonzalez to the University of Houston Coastal Center in La Marque.  It has been described as “200 acres of the finest native prairie you’ll find along the Gulf Coast, from Florida to Texas…”  We found a field dense with rattlesnake master, ready to collect.  We will also collect Liatris and cluster bushmint .

On Saturday, November 23, collect at the Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge with John Magera, who may be leading the group to the good prairies in areas normally not open to the public.  Collectors are invited to grilled hot dog and hamburge.

On Saturday, November 30, we will be collecting on the Katy Prairie.  “The Katy Prairie Conservancy (KPC) owns and manages…more than 13,000 acres of habitat just west of Houston, Texas…”, a vast habitat with extremely diverse land use, which in turn brings an extremely diverse bird and other wildlife population.  Consider staying for lunch and bird watching at the Matt Cook Viewing Platform (direction, map to Cook Platform; exact collecting location TBA)

On Saturday, December 7, we will collect at Nash Prairie, Nash Prairie is about 15 minutes directly south of Brazos Bend State Park.  “This 400 acres, nearly untouched by man, is a snapshot of Texas as it used to be….one of the last remaining segments of the Great Coastal Prairie…” (Please note, Nash Prairie is private property.  Do not enter without permission.)   
See you on the prairie!

Flo Hannah Speaks on Native Grasses

Join us for the November ONC Botany/Entomology Group Meeting

When: Tuesday, November 12, 7:30pm
Where: Bayland Community Center 6400 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 77074
What: Flo Hannah will be speaking on Native Grasses

She will open with a brief refresher course on Grasses and will then move on to showing us some of the lesser known grasses found on the Lawther Deer Park Praire Preserve, recently saved by us (ONC), among hundreds of others who contributed - it has become the people’s prairie. Who doesn’t like learning a little more about grasses?  This is a wonderful opportunity to increase your knowledge. 


Flo studying a grass she picked at Deer Park Prairie for tonight’s talk.

By the way, the number of native plants on the Deer Park plant list continues to grow.   

Celebratory Gala with Bayou Land Conservancy

Want to make a contribution to Houston’s conservation efforts and support Deer Park Prairie? Attending this Gala is a great way to do so!

Bayou Land Conservancy wrote:

When: Friday, November 15, 2013, 7 - 11pm
Where: Northwest Forest Center, 12715 Telge Rd., Cypress TX
RSVP: Click Here to Purchase Tickets to the Gala

Click HERE to view the full color invitation.

For the past 17 years we’ve had our nose to the grindstone, protecting the functioning ecosystems that remain in the Houston region. But it’s time to revel in the fact that we’ve recently become the 4th most successful land conservation organization in Texas! Join us in celebrating our 2013 accomplishments, including the fastest, most effective conservation project to date—the saving of the Deer Park Prairie!

All funds raised at this event will help Bayou Land Conservancy to continue to work with public and private landowners as we permanently protect the conservation values of their land. Our preserves provide all of us with: flood control benefits, air and water quality benefits, and green aesthetics that help raise all surrounding property values. Your support helps us complete our work on the Spring Creek and Cypress Creek Greenways as well as other areas of wildlife habitat in need of preservation.

At the Gala . . .

Celebrate the fastest, most effective conservation win in Texas history – the saving of the Deer Park Prairie! Soon to be known as the “Lawther – Deer Park Prairie”, this will be the 50th conservation easement in Bayou Land Conservancy’s permanent land protection portfolio!

Help us honor, in person, key people who helped us preserve this special prairie!
Terry Hershey, Henry Hamman and Ann Hamilton.

Enjoy a locally-sourced meal – produce from area farms, cheese from area cheese makers!

Participate in silent auction awesomeness: a 10-person wine tasting, trail riding on horseback, and luxury hotel stays are just a few of our items you’ll be able to bid on at the event.

Last but not least, shake a leg! Show off your moves on the dance floor to the live band sounds of Yvonne Washington and the Mix! Houston’s own “Aretha”, this band will round out the end of the evening. Learn more about Miss Washington and listen to this fantastic 8-piece band with horns HERE.
Purchase your tickets here!

Christine Mansfield with the Katy Prairie Conservancy Wrote:

Visit the prairie to see what goes bump in the night on our Wild West Tour: Nocturnal Naturalist next Friday, November 1st from 6 - 9 pm!

When: Friday November 1, 2013 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM CDT

Where:
Indiangrass Preserve 31950 Hebert Rd., Waller, TX 77484


In the spirit of Halloween, you are invited to spend an evening on the moonless prairie seeking crafty coyotes, ghostly-white barn owls, and spiders slinking in the shadows. After a quick dinner, expert bird guide and Texas Master Naturalist, Glenn Olsen, will lead this adult-oriented trek onto wild prairie preserves seldom accessible to the public.

Registration is limited and fills up fast - click on the link below to register.

REGISTER

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call us at 713-523-6135 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Check our website for more details and other event info.

Looking forward to seeing you out on the prairie!

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